• Fri
  • Jul 11, 2014
  • Updated: 1:58pm
SportSoccer
SOCCER

Andre Villas-Boas defends Spurs' goalscoring record

Manager points to table after 0-0 draw with Everton

PUBLISHED : Monday, 04 November, 2013, 10:29am
UPDATED : Monday, 04 November, 2013, 10:58am

Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas launched a staunch defence of his side’s Premier League goalscoring record after their 0-0 draw with Everton at Goodison Park.

Spurs have only scored nine goals in 10 league matches this season, with Hull City the only team in the top half of the table to have scored fewer.

But having seen his side climb up to fourth place, Villas-Boas dismissed suggestions that they lack a cutting edge in the final third of the pitch, and pointed to their tally in all competitions.

“The team is creating more chances and more shots. I carry on about all the good statistics and others about all the negative, and there will be debate,” Villas-Boas said.

“I don’t think it is dramatic. We are on 30 goals in 17 games and it is the second-highest ever at the club, so I don’t worry about that.

“We are the team that creates more opportunities in the Premier League, we have more shots.

“Hull are sitting 10th and we are fourth. The chances are coming and sometimes they go your way and the opponent is not there to stop it.

“At the moment it is results that have put us in fourth and one of the spots in the Champions League. You can have more goals, less goals. We all want excitement, but right now the team is doing extremely well.”

Clear-cut chances were at a premium throughout Saturday’s contest, although Everton’s Tim Howard was the busier of the two goalkeepers before the break.

The United States international saved a curling free-kick from Kyle Walker and an angled drive from Andros Townsend, while Roberto Soldado headed wide from a good position.

Everton showed more ambition in the second half and Steven Pienaar received the ball in a good position, only to be denied by a last-ditch block from Michael Dawson.

The Toffees had more dynamism following the introduction of Ross Barkley and Gerard Deulofeu, and Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris had to be alert late on to save from the latter in the dying stages.

Everton manager Roberto Martinez also felt his side should have been awarded a penalty when Seamus Coleman’s trailing leg was caught by Spurs defender Jan Vertonghen.

The pair hand tangled in the first half, with Vertonghen claiming a penalty after apparently being felled by the Irishman, but the roles were reversed in the second period when Coleman was clipped from behind by the Belgian.

“That’s a clear example when they tell you decisions level themselves out over a season. It doesn’t happen,” Martinez said.

“We had a similar situation at Villa and at the Etihad. Seamus gets impeded. He doesn’t over-react, he gets back on his feet and it should have been a penalty.

“I think the referee was a bit picky overall. Some of the bookings for both sides were a bit strange. But I can understand it was a tense game.”

Martinez was satisfied with a point, though, and believes Everton’s supporters have not yet seen the best of his side.

“We are really pleased with the draw, but we want to carry on improving,” the Spaniard said.

“I don’t think that we have fulfilled our potential yet. The start has been good, but we want to carry on progressing.

“We know we have played against a very good Spurs side and without being at our best, we were able to keep a good clean sheet.

“When you are involved in a 10-month competition, you don’t go through putting names on where you want to finish this early.

“I think that there is something special in that dressing room. All we want to do is fulfil our potential as quick as we can. The attitude of the players, the competition for places, gives me an incredible feeling.”

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